He came to the city while still a child
He serves me my half-glass of tea
As I wait for my bus to arrive
He swats the flies, smiles at me

He lays out some shriveled fruit
On a mat on the sidewalk, to sell
He offers to wipe my windshield
For a coin or two, then wishes me well

He brings me flags and whirligigs
Little amusements at a traffic light
He balances a pan of wet concrete
On his head, at a construction site

He sits patiently and shatters
Granite rocks in the scorching sun
As they build a new expressway
For our shiny new cars to run

I read daily the news of his woes
I tut-tut, mustering all sincerity
He has a face, a name, a family
Yet he is only a migrant to me

I lament, loudly, my loss of freedom
Knowing full well I am safe and secure
Amid the sturdy beams and girders
Of my routine’s stable structure

I have my refuge – he has none left
The warren he lived in was taken away
He lost his living – that was weeks ago
He hangs on to life – it’s all he has today

He sits under a tree, rubs his tired feet
He thinks about the miles they must walk still
I think of him – I tremble with grief and guilt
If I can gift him these useless feet, I so gladly will